A recurring series where we will profile every player and coach on Maryland’s roster, counting down to kick-off against Miami. Thanks to OBNUG for the idea.
Today we profile Maryland’s only player from South Carolina in the 2011 class.
Stephen Grommer, Freshman, Offensive Guard
Ratings: Three stars by Rivals; two stars, #122 offensive guard by Scout; three stars, #81 offensive tackle by ESPN
40-yard dash time: 5.4
High School: Spartanburg High School (Spartanburg, Sc.)
How’d He Get To College Park?
Stephen Grommer committed to Maryland back in September, after his visit during the Morgan State game. He cited the atmosphere, and said he knew as soon as he left the campus that that’s where he would end up. He was a stud lineman at Spartanburg, playing right tackle during his senior season and holding his own against rock monster and No. 1 recruit in the country Jadeveon Clowney.
Grommer is also an incredibly impressive student, sporting a 3.9 GPA, being named to all-area and all-region Academic teams, and getting interest from Harvard. From our story on his commitment:
He benches 320 pounds, squats 450 pounds, and cleans 250 pounds. He does shot put and discus for his high school’s track and field team, and was named all-region the past two years in discus. He hasn’t missed a workout or practice since eighth grade.
Grommer plans on majoring in business, and Maryland’s school in that field has continued to be a drawing point for recruits. He was also offered by East Carolina and North Carolina State, and was pursued by South Carolina and Kentucky, among others.
More after the jump.
“Ephen” Stephen Grommer
Committing to Maryland
Spartanburg went 5-7 his senior year
Arbitrary Top Five List:
Top 2011 prospects from South Carolina:
1. Jadeveon Clowney, DE, South Carolina
2. Phillip Dukes, DT, South Carolina
3. Pat Martin, DB, Tennessee
4. Lateek Townsend, LB, Clemson
5. Brandon Shell, OL, South Carolina
Grommer puts himself in the conversation for taking over for Gonnella next year, with Nate Clarke and Pete White.
Clarke and White’s pure talent makes Grommer a distant third option.
With Justin Lewis gone, there’s now one fewer obstacle in the way for Stephen Grommer to get playing time. While he played right tackle at the high school level, he projects as an offensive guard in college. As it stands right now, Andrew Gonnella (a senior) and Josh Cary (a sophomore) are the expected starters at guard, with Pete White (a sophomore) expected to compete with Cary for the right guard spot. Coming in with Grommer is Nate Clarke, an extremely talented freshman who could also challenge Cary and White.
Grommer is pretty talented – he has impressive weightlifting honors, showcased good agility in high school, and has very good technique for someone just coming into college. That will almost assuredly not be enough for him to see playing time in 2011, where he will pretty much definitely redshirt. But in the future, there are some opportunities with him.
Like we said, with Lewis gone that frees up a starting spot in 2012, or at least takes away one competitor for it. Grommer will still have to compete with Cary, White, and Clarke, who will have experience and/or loads of expectations on the side. Add in the impressive Nick Brigham, a 2012 signee, and Maryland’s got quite the backup at the guard slot – a good problem for Maryland fans, a not as good one for Grommer.
Regardless, Grommer will have his chance. He’ll only have to compete with one returning starter next year, which will increase his odds. We’re not saying it’s not an uphill climb, but it can certainly be done. He’s certainly good enough and motivated enough to do it.
Our next profile is on the only member of Maryland’s 2011 incoming offensive linemen who enrolled early for spring practice.